Monday, July 18, 2011

Another Great Week

Another great week in Washington, D.C., both personally and professionally! It is hard to believe eight weeks have passed. But so much was done, once again. I went to Georgetown and saw the sights with a gaggle of interns, went to the Library of Congress with my good friend and his Mom. We saw Jefferson’s collection that he sold to Congress to rebuild our Nation’s library after it had been destroyed when the British burned Washington. My friend and I went to lunch at a landmark Capitol Hill restaurant, and then took in the National Portrait Gallery, with its eclectic mix of Gilbert Stuart presidential portraits to Andy Warhol’s paintings of celebrities. Once again, I had a great time because of the company, but once again I was frustrated by the efforts needed and the inconvenience imposed upon us in order to get to where we were going and to see the things we wanted to see. Both the building layouts, and placement of Metro elevators in relation to platforms and exits were a significant source of frustration; although it is not something I must necessarily live with on a daily basis, it is an experience I will not ever forget- which will aid me in my advocacy for disability rights, policy, law.

-Rick Sommer

Professionally, I also experienced another great week. On the Senate Committee, we are sending legislation to the floor for a vote. Accompanying all proposed legislation must be a lengthy report that gives background information about the legislation, as well as a discussion of what each of the provisions will do, or change current law, or impact society of how an agency operates. So I spent the majority of my week working on writing, re-writing, and editing report language for healthcare, administrative, education, and labor provisions of a large piece of legislation. My first year of law school prepared me for quite a bit- legal writing and analysis, statute construction and regulation parsing, but this report is on a whole new level. It has been exciting, though, and I have learned a tremendous amount about how and why Congress does what they do.

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